Tips for Winterizing Your Northern Virginia Home

Looking for quick tips for winterizing your Northern Virginia home? Northern Virginia is a wonderful place to live and one of my favorite things about this area is that we enjoy four true weather seasons. Enjoyable as our weather is, Northern Virginia homeowners have to be proactive about winterizing their homes each year because winters can be relatively harsh. A particular problem is the area is with mice because the critters love to burrow and find shelter from the cold making vulnerable homes and easy target. Below are my best quick tips for winterizing your Northern Virginia home.

Winterizing Your Northern Virginia Home

Clear Out Those Gutters

Probably my least favorite chore but arguably one of the most important is clearing out your gutters.It is critical to remove any debris, leaves, grime, branches, acorns, and so forth because allowing the gutters to become clogged causes major problems overtime. The main problem is if water runoff is not able to drain property the moisture weakens the eaves, fascia board, siding, and roof, making these soft spots an excellent target for rodents looking to burrow from the cold and moms looking to give birth to their babies.

Inspect the Exterior Surfaces

Similar to clearing out the gutters, inspecting the exterior wood and trim is important for a similar reason as the gutters, to protect your home from what is outside (and wants to get in). Be sure to caulk and repair any cracks around the outside of your windows, doors, and trim to ensure a tight seal. In some cases weather stripping may be needed, and depending on the age of your doors and windows, it may be worth investing in storm doors and storm windows, if you do not already have them. Also consider sealing the paint on your deck if necessary. Further, clear off any moss or excess greenery from the siding and roof to help prevent buildup during the wetter winter months.

Take Care of Sprouts and Sprinklers

It is extremely important to disconnect your garden hoses and any sprinklers and store them for the winter. Additionally, make sure your exterior water spouts are completely shut off. And, if you have a sprinkler system be sure to turn that off as well. Following the theme of dealing with water, this the time of year where you want to make certain that you do not have leaks, because again, leaking water creates weaknesses in your home’s exterior, but it also attracts rodents because they need water to survive, so it is a double whammy problem.

Bring That Stuff Indoors

Outdoor furniture and décor is expensive so why leave it outdoors to be destroyed by the harsher winter weather? Either put your outdoor furniture in storage or invest in furniture covers to protect it. If storage and funds are limited you can also consider covering the furniture tightly with tarps and bungees cords and store them at the back of the house. Additionally, you might want to store your grill or at the very least cover it with a grill cover.

Ensure Your Warmth

It typically gets pretty chilly in Northern Virginia. This is the time of year where you need to make sure your chimney, fireplace, and heating system are in good working order. Depending on how well you keep up with inspections, if it has been awhile, be sure to have these systems looked at by a professional to ensure efficiency and safety. Also, if you have not already, consider investing in a smart thermostat to optimize the productivity of your heating system, which will ideally save you a few bucks on your electric bill. Finally, check the attic and basement areas to make sure the insulation is in good shape. Also feel around your electrical outlets and switch-plates for cold air to ensure nothing is leaking. If you do feel cold air coming just pick up some socket sealers and install them to resolve the problem.

For more tips and information feel free to contact me and follow me on social media on Facebook @mmkrealtyllc, Twitter @MMKRealtyLLC, and Instagram @mmkrealty.